Removal of Confederate Statues Raises Tensions in New Orleans

The statue honoring Confederate General P.G.T. Beauregard is one of four monuments to be removed within the coming days. (Photo: Times-Picayune)

The Civil War ended more than 150 years ago. But monuments commemorating Confederate history still retain the power to evoke raw emotions and divide communities.

On Sunday about 700 protesters faced off in New Orleans, where several monuments are being removed, reports CBS News correspondent Michelle Miller.

The Big Easy’s debate is one that’s happening in other Southern cities. In this battle over history, heritage and race, the mayor of New Orleans has said that these statues put the Confederacy on a pedestal, and that is out of step with today’s values of racial diversity and inclusion.

Opposing protesters marched to a statue honoring Confederate General Robert E. Lee on Sunday.

On one side of the debate: Those who want the city’s Confederate monuments taken down, saying they are symbols of racism and white supremacy.

“The fight that we’re waging is against the city fathers who have refused to bring about genuine equality and freedom for the black people here,” said Malcolm Suber of the activist organization #TakeEmDownNOLA.

On the other side: Supporters of the monuments who argue they honor Southern heritage and history.

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